Papua New Guinea
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Provinces running out of basic medicine supply

From the Highlands to the Coast of PNG medical supplies of basic drugs are running low.

And the essentials antibiotics like Amoxil, Crystapen, CMP, Flagyl, Ceftriaxone and other anesthetic drugs is out of stock in the major hospitals in Port Moresby, Eastern Highlands, Mt Hagen, Western Highlands province, and Angau in Lae, Morobe province.

Provincial Health Authorities CEOs are now asking the government when will they start receiving supplies to ensure basic medical attention is attended to and patients are able to access the drugs free.

Morobe Provincial Health Authority chief executive officer Dr Kipas Binga said, “MPHA continue to have nil stock on their essential drugs from their pharmacy that simply reflects the situation down at our Area Medical Store.

“The staff give regular prescription to in patients and outpatients to buy in our local pharmacies as we do run out of these drugs frequently.”

While in Hela, HELA Provincial Health Authority chief executive officer Dr James Kintwa has called on the Health Department to seriously sort out the medical supplies issues that is affecting a lot of PHAs in the country.

“The medical supplies challenge for us is an issue to the sector and Hela PHA is no exception.

“As CEOs we need to inform the public that we have got a better strategy so that the public can trust us because nobody else can do so as far as the medical supplies issue is concerned.

In Eastern Highlands, staff at clinics says the lack of drugs has led to more health issues including:


– Sexually Transmitted Infections spiraling out of control,
– Uncontrol births,
– High demand for typhoid drugs in Goroka,
– Increase in the average number of patients seeing daily,
– STI drug resistant patients and others.

And according the health officials in Goroka, the stock does not last long and will be depleted in a month.

Into remote Kambia, in Jiwaka, 3000 people are struggling and facing difficulties in having access to proper Health services.

District Health Manager Kuk Gole said men, women and children have died in silence because the area was very remote and people could not get needed medical drugs and supplies.

“Five Community Health Posts at the area have all been shutdown more than ten years ago leaving the only one Mt Tau Aidpost which is operating without needed drugs and supplies,” he said.

In Kokopo East New Britain province, in the Gelegele Health Centre (GHC) According to Sandra Damera, a Community Health Worker who oversees the clinic’s dispensary says chloramphenicol vials, crystalline penicillin vials, and benzathine penicillin vials have been out of stock for more than three months.

Sick people are given prescriptions for pharmaceutical vials, which can cost up to K15 to


K20 at private pharmacies in town.

“Medicine vials are essential items in clinics. It allows us to provide injections.

We are now out of stock and are directing patients to local pharmacies to obtain these medicine vials,” Damera said.